Normally we focus on travel and all the madness and frustration that brings.
Since this is my blog or at least the “Web Wizard” says it is, I get to post what I want. Also, I don’t want Tipper Gore (She has 4 names, so I don’t trust her) to get upset, remember her?.
This afternoon Burt Reynolds passed away, dammit.
I’m almost 54, balding and my remaining hair is quickly turning gray……gasp. My birthday is September 30th, exactly nine months after New Year’s Eve. I willing to bet that alcohol was involved in my conception, sorry Mom & Dad. When it comes to marketing I fit squarely into the “Burt Reynolds Quadrant”.
In the late 70’s HBO and cable TV became a thing. However, it isn’t what we have today, they’d roll out 7 or 8 movies each month and then run them continuously.
This is where I was first acquainted with 1972’s Deliverance. Four men from Atlanta who go on a trip in the Georgia wilderness, what could possibly go wrong? Apparently a hell of a lot. For instance murder, sexual assault and injuries. If you haven’t seen the movie, never search “Squeal Like A Pig” on YouTube.
Three things intrigued me about Reynolds in this movie, the 1970 International Harvester Scout he drove, his neoprene vest and the fact that he carried a recurve bow. This was a very creepy movie, especially for a 15-year-old.
Next up was a 1974 classic The Longest Yard.
A sadistic warden asks a former pro quarterback, now serving time in his prison, to put together a team of inmates to take on (and get pummeled by) the guards.
My favorite scene (See Above) was when Burt stole a Citroen SM, not a Maserati, and eluded the police to the dulcet sounds of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s – Saturday Night Special. This movie kicked so much ass that they remade it in 2005, and it included Reynolds.
Next up 1977’s Smokey and The Bandit. If you’ve been living in a cave and never witnessed this cinematic masterpiece, here’s the synopsis.
Big Enos (Pat McCormick) wants to drink Coors at a truck show, but in 1977 it was illegal to sell Coors east of the Mississippi River without a permit. Truck driver Bo “Bandit” Darville (Burt Reynolds) agrees to pick up the beer in Texas and drive it to Georgia within 28 hours. When Bo picks up hitchhiker Carrie (Sally Field), he attracts the attention of Sheriff Buford T. Justice (Jackie Gleason). Angry that Carrie will not marry his son, Justice embarks on a high-speed chase after Bandit.
In the 70’s Coors beer couldn’t be sold East of the Mississippi River. At the time I lived in Georgia and my Dad would routinely mule a six pack back when he traveled to Dallas, TX. Let’s just say my Dad was the hero of the cul-de-sac BBQ. This movie was a reality show long before there was such a thing.
My first car was a 225 Slant 6 1974 Dodge Duster, complete with a snakeskin roof, and on the front of it, I proudly displayed the same license plate that Bandit did. Yep, from 1956 to 2001 the Georgia Flag contained a Confederate flag.
I’m not sure if any of these movies went on to win an Emmy or Oscar or whatever award they give to movies. However, I can tell you that these movies did win the hearts of males everywhere. This was the 70’s Brut by Faberge, Tiparillo Cigars and suede anything was all the rage, what’s not to like?
Reynolds continued to act, from 1981’s The Cannonball Run to this year’s Shadow Fighter he stayed busy.
Burt, thank you for the laughs, the goal to become cooler than we could ever hope to be and the chance to own a 1977 Trams Am.
I leave you with this 7:00 minute Saturday Night Live Celebrity Jeopardy clip, I’m sure Burt approves.
My movies were the kind they show in prisons and airplanes, because nobody can leave. Burt Reynolds
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